this book truly embodies a remake. it tells the story of the great gatsby in a new light giving fresh faces and "names" to the characters. i read this book before i read the original great gatsby and must say that the original was alot easier to understand with this. it tells the story of a mysterious jake who has these lavish aprties and is so cool he makes ice cream look like a slushie. but things get complicated as old love is rekindled and hidden secrets are revealed. it's an easy read and you'll have a hard putting it down because it's so suspensful. enjoy this one.
I teach The Great Gatsby to college students taking an introduction to literature course and I teach Jake, Reinvented to high school reading students (those who have trouble with comprehension, fluency, and vocabulary). I love Gatsby and I love Jake, Reinvented. My students read Gatsby in their English classes, so before we started our read aloud of Jake, Reinvented, we watched the movie version with Robert Redford. The kids were once again enamoured with the story of Gatsby and Daisy as they are with Jake and Didi in Jake, Reinvented.
Korman does what he does best: write teen fiction. He doesn't wish it to rival Gatsby, he seems to be doing it more as a tribute. My students love it, and they are learning to make connections, compare and contrast, and further understand the depth of Gatsby in their terms: high school romance.
Jake, Reinvented has the potential to be a great bridge to The Great Gatsby. Like all well-written YA books it has similar elements found in classic novels. Sure, it isnt exactly like Gatsby but it shouldnt have to be. Bridging gives the students prior knowledge that they need to elaborate and organize information to the classic text. Jake, Reinvented is a reconstruction of Gatsby; it has similar characters, theme and plotline. Bridging is all about compare and contrast and making connections. A classroom can do amazing things with this book when it is coupled appropriatly with the classic text.
Korman did an excellent job!
It's possible that I'm not the right person to judge this book, because I adore the book that it's based on and I practically have it committed to memory. However, amost any high school graduate who reads Jake, Reinvented (and I realize HS graduates are not the target audience) will have read The Great Gatsby, and the author had to expect that. Even without the inevitable comparison to TGG, though, this is a novel that comes up short.
Jake, Reinvented is F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, set in a suburban high, and Jake Garrett has remade himself into a long snapper on the football team in order to capture the heart of Didi, the quarterback's girlfriend. The story is narrated by Rick, the team's kicker and the awkward's means of (re)introducing Jake and Didi.
If you've read The Great Gatsby, then you know the story, and Fitzgerald wrote it better. If you don't, then I'm not sure what sense you'll make of the relationship between Didi and Todd (the quarterback), or the dynamics of the team. The Great Gatsby ultimately succeeds in large part because the reader believes in Gatsby, and understand his dream. Jake, sadly, is no Gatsby.